Monthly Archives: December 2015

How do Social Media Influence Attitudes?

Dannon paris

What comes to mind when you think of Chobani?  Now, consider Dannon and what that brand means to you.  The associations you made could lead to different types of attitudinal and behavioral responses and responses in social media.  Perhaps you want a thick Turkish yogurt with clear bold flavors or a more traditional French yogurt?  Maybe you are feeling like a little Paris in your life today?

Encouraging consumers to develop brand associations can help your social media marketing strategy by actually reducing communications costs.  When people have a clear picture in their minds of what your brand represents you don’t have to spend as much time, effort and expense telling them. Not only that, but people may share their ideas and thoughts about your brand in social media matching the associations that are clear to them.  That’s great for your earned media strategy right?

So what is the science behind these attitudinal processes?  Basically it comes down to a type of learning called associative learning or classical conditioning. Market researchers have examined variations on Pavlov’s original research with dog saliva and applied it to consumer salivation.

When consumers develop associations between advertisements and brands two processes may take place: direct affect transfer or inferential belief formation. Direct affect transfer occurs when consumers feel positive about elements in an advertisement and transfer the feeling to the brand. Inferential belief formation is when consumers develop cognitive thoughts about a brand from a communication, which could arise from an association.

When the consumer actively considers the information presented to him or her through a process of elaboration, the person enters into the realm of cognition, the act of learning through thinking and reasoning. Marketers using social sites for engagement can attempt to influence customers through either direct affect transfer or inferential belief formation. Both types of learning and the subsequent attitude formation can take place through social media or mobile vehicles.

For example, Domino’s Pizza wanted to change consumer attitudes toward their product after discovering that people thought the pizza tasted like cardboard. After some soul searching and sincere focus groups with customers, Domino’s improved the product and released a YouTube video discussing their problem and highlighting their solution. The purpose of the video was to change people’s beliefs about Domino’s. On the other hand Coca-cola’s app contest resulted in “open happiness” a mobile app for iPhone, Android and Blackberry that generates positive feelings, but does not provide a specific brand message.

Brands Influencing Attitudes Through Social and Mobile

Attitudinal Response Example
Direct Affect Transfer Attitudes are developed when the individual pairs the positive stimuli in an ad with the brand. Coca-cola creates “open happiness” a mobile app to share positive feelings.
Inferential Belief Formation Attitudes are developed through active thinking and reasoning of the message in the ad. Domino’s pizza releases a YouTube video showing their improvements to the product following customer complaints.

coke happiness dominos

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(not) Measuring Snapchat

snapchat

This Friday I will be teaching metrics to my students.  We will talk about how to set goals, determine strategies, tag all efforts and evaluate the metrics.  There are many tools that provide metrics for the major social sites and you can track your posts on Google Analytics through Google’s URL builder to see how the content performs and leads to conversions.

However, what to do about Snapchat?  Brands can’t tag content to show up and even if they could, people could register a brand identification or message, but not link through to the site.

Right now the only metrics available to brands using Snapchat are those on the site, such as total views and screenshots taken.

Social Media Examiner provides some good advice for planning your Snapchat campaign so it can be more track-able.

  1. you can ask followers to take screenshots of snaps – a measurable metric.
  2. you can offer a discount code to those who take a screenshot and track those who redeem it.
  3. Give Snapchat users a unique landing page and track it with Google Analytics.

Of course I would expect Google to come up with a solution for tracking these campaigns.  In the meantime, it’s always good practice to make sure your strategy is working and whether the same goal could be achieved elsewhere more efficiently.

Ask yourself: Is Snapchat the best use of my marketing energy? Where can I get the most bang for my buck (and time) with my target audience?